Lewis & Harris
Lewis is characterised by peat bogs in the north, hills, lochs and sandy beaches on its west coast. Harris is the southern region of Lewis with mountains, machair and sandy beaches, as well as being famous for the Harris Tweed.
Lewis & Harris Self Catering Cottages
The Isle of Lewis
Lewis is the largest and most populated of the islands with Stornoway (the administrative and commercial centre of the Western Isles) in the north-east, being the largest settlement.
As well as its natural harbour it has visitor attractions including the Museum nan Eilean which provides the history of the Western Isles; An Lanntair Arts Centre; the Lewis Loom Centre; the 19th century Lews Castle with a woodland centre and the ruins of the 14th century St Columba's Church. There are also boat wildlife trips around the islands and there is a four day music festival Hebridean Celtic Festival in Stornoway in July.
Places to visit in the north of the island include the lighthouse and the 12th century St Moluag's Church at the Butt of Lewis and the Ness Heritage Centre at Tabost. There are blackhouses and museums at Arnol and Gearrannan, and substantial remains of a 2000 year old dry stone broch with visitor centre at Carloway (Carlabagh). The Callanish (Calanais) Standing Stones have a magnificent setting at Loch Roag - an almost complete circle with a cross of 40 small stones within it - the exhibition in the visitor centre provides interesting background information.
The island of Great Bernera (linked to the mainland by a causeway) is well worth a visit to the beach at Bosta, the Bernera Museum and to view an excavated Iron Age village. There are fantastic sandy beaches at Miavig and Mealista with boat trips to the Flannan Isles to view the seals, puffins and ruins of a 7th century chapel. There are beautiful sandy beaches and a heritage centre at Uig.
The Isle of Harris
The ferry port of Tarbert (between North and South Harris) is the main settlement in Harris and is set in magnificent scenery. North Harris is mountainous with good opportunities for climbing, walking and bird watching.
South Harris has magnificent white sandy beaches, for example, at Luskentyre and Scarasta. Places to visit include the Seal-Iam! Visitor Centre and genealogical research centre in Northton and the 16th century St Clement's Church and ancient stone houses in Rodel. The island of Taransay on the west coast was the location for the BBC series Castaway.